Graves of Mongolian Shamans Discovered near Soltanieh Dome in Iran
Several graves were found on a hillock beside an Islamic cemetery and this indicates that they had enjoyed high social status during the reign of the Ilkhanids, Mongol descendents of Genghis Khan who controlled large parts of Iran from 1256 to 1349, explains the archaeological team director Abdorreza Mohajerinejad. Read the article from the Tehran Times. Submitted by Timothy Flynn, Three-Year Program graduate, Royal Oaks, California.
Shamans Flourishing in Mongolian Capital
Banned for 70 years under Communist rule, shamanism was protected under the state's embrace of religious freedom in the 1992 Constitution. Now shamans – both traditional and self-styled with their own rituals and ways – are flourishing in the capital city of Ulan Bator. They are in high demand by the thousands of workers and nomads who lost their livelihood as the country attempts a market economy. Read the article from the New York Times online. Submitted by Timothy Flynn, Three-Year Program graduate, Royal Oaks, California.
Amazon Cultures Declining
As food disappears, researchers worry about a possible wave of cultural extinction among tribes that have long relied on nature. The subject is a sad one, but the person who sent the article to this E-newsletter notes:
This article in today's New York Times highlights for me the extreme value of Michael's (Harner's) work, and hints at how he is not just preserving ancient wisdom and knowledge, his teachings may one day become the sole pure awareness of traditions in great danger of dying off – if they haven't already changed beyond recognition.The article also mentions Tacuma, one of the Foundation's Living Treasures of Shamanism. Read the article from the New York Times online. Submitted by Lou Judson, Novato, California.
Circle of All Nations Weekend
The 40th annual Circle of All Nations weekend, hosted by Algonquin elder William Commanda, was held on the Kitigan Zibi reserve in Gatineau Hills, Ottawa. The weekend promotes international peace and respect for the land, and reconnection with the spiritual. Read the Article from the Ottawa Citizen. Submitted by Timothy Flynn, Three-Year Program graduate, Royal Oaks, California.
SUBMIT NEWS: We invite you to submit news about shamanism for our readers. Please submit no more than a few brief paragraphs, including the source of the news item to the Editor.
Cave of the Hands, Patagonia, ArgentinaShamanic Views from National Geographic
©iStockphoto.com/Eduardo Mariano Rivero
See a video about a Paraguayan shaman searching for medicinal cures in the rainforest.
View the photo gallery and read the article about Mongolia's Reindeer people.
Read about an expedition exploring the rock art of Borneo and view the photo gallery, particularly the cave art of a shaman's trek into the spirit world. Visit National Geographic online.
Note: Each issue we plan to post on the website or provide a link to an article or other media with useful information about shamanism or shamanic healing. Check the Articles section for several varied perspectives on shamanism and shamanic healing, many from past issues of Shamanism/The Shamanism Annual, the Foundation's scholarly journal -- one of the exclusive benefits of the Circle of the Foundation.
Digging for Shamanic Gold
I got my first glimpse of shamanic treasure when out of curiosity I attended a weekend workshop led by Michael and Sandra Harner of the FSS. For me what I experienced in this work shop seemed exciting and exotic, but had little place in my everyday life.
Fortunately for me within two weeks I met Jack who was actively practicing shamanism in his daily life. With his mentoring encouragement I too began to journey whenever I needed help with making decisions, finding answers that eluded me, and knowing my next best step.
Two years later when I attended Sandra Harner's week night follow up workshops, I was an experienced journeyer traveling regularly to the three worlds. It was while attending those FSS workshops that I set my intention to journey to the Lower World to ask, "What have I been growing all winter long?"
As I entered nonordinary reality I found myself in what manifests for me as "the meadow" of the Lower World. Bison was waiting for me. I greeted him and asked my question. He led me away from the meadow to the shore of a small heart shaped lake surrounded by conifer trees. Bison spoke, "Look at yourself," he said. I was too shy to look at myself, so I looked at him instead; it was easier to behold him, all hairy and big and beautiful. Again he spoke, "Look at yourself," he said. Slowly I shifted my eyes toward my own reflection in the water. Once more Bison spoke. "Corn," he said. When I heard the word "corn" I noticed a little peninsula protruding into the lake from the East. On the peninsula I saw tiny shoots of new corn plants. "Corn!" I said. Bison repeated, "Corn." I thanked him and returned home carrying the image with me.
The lake in the book was in Maine. I went to visit that lake which sits inside the heart of Cadillac Mountain on Mount Desert Island. There I journeyed to ask, "What do I take home by way of inspiration?" In this journey Horse took me to the waxing moon. I thanked Horse pondering still about the corn and now the waxing moon.
One early morning before leaving Maine I drove West, away from the shore looking in the dark for a good spot to await the rising sun. After the dawn, I realized I was lost. Driving along in the early morning light I saw a sign for an herb garden. I followed a gravel road and stopped at a gate. Picking catnip kissed by the morning dew was a woman wearing a straw hat with a pendant hanging from her neck; it was a bone carving of the waxing moon. Later I learned that some herbal students and teachers wear the same bone moon pendants to represent their connection with plants.
I understood then that "corn" was my work and the waxing moon would help my corn to sprout and grow. That morning nine years ago with Bison was the beginning. The "corn" grew into the Sacred Footbaths I administer, the herbal floral and earth remedies I prepare, the classes I teach so others can make their own "medicine" and the love I always carry in my heart.
At the root of all this "corn" lies the shamanic gold that enriches my life and the lives of others who come to me seeking help and healing from the hidden worlds of shamanism. – Submitted by Annabella De Mattei, Berkeley, California. Visit her at www.lunafina.com.
NOTE: "Healing Words" contains helpful practices, ideas and suggestions from shamanic healers, answers to questions of concern to those practicing shamanism, and inspiring stories. FSS presents them as a service to the shamanic community without endorsement; as always, each shamanic healer is responsible for using these ideas in a responsible and ethical manner. If you would like to SUBMIT A HELPFUL TIP, email the Editor. (A few succinct paragraphs, please.)
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Editor: Susan Mokelke
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